300 Survey Respondents give their tips for improving self esteem

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I’d thought about writing an article on self esteem for quite some time. This was before I’d read the headline that “British Youngsters rank amongst worst in developed world on mental wellbeing”. And before I’d surveyed 300 people, realising, to my horror, that low self esteem was far more prevalent than I’d thought.

On the flip side, my survey allowed me to ask people what had really helped them improve their self esteem. Because self esteem isn’t fixed in the ground and can be developed. 

Here are some of the things my respondents said had helped improve their self esteem which I’ve tried to back up with some of the results from the survey.


  1. It is unlikely everyone criticizes you as hard as you do yourself.

Forms response chart. Question title: do you judge yourself by the same standard you judge others?. Number of responses: 300 responses.

2. Remember that people are not focused on your short-comings! Come across confident and respectful, then you and the people you are around will believe you are.

Forms response chart. Question title: do you expect people to be judgemental?. Number of responses: 300 responses.

3. Take deep breaths and remember the people you are talking to aren’t above, nor below you.

Forms response chart. Question title: do you give your own opinion equal weight to other peoples'?. Number of responses: 299 responses.

4. Remind yourself that you have worth even if other people don’t like you. You can’t please everyone

5. Be healthy and exercise. It makes you appreciate how well you body functions.

Forms response chart. Question title: do you think we need the 'perfect body' to be confident?. Number of responses: 300 responses.

6. Take people’s comments with less gravity

Forms response chart. Question title: if another person judged your appearance, would you.... Number of responses: 297 responses.

7. It’s just about making the decision that you are a person who deserves to be treated the same as anyone else, and compartmentalising that little b*itch in your brain telling you you’re not.

Forms response chart. Question title: do you treat others how you want to be treated?. Number of responses: 299 responses.

8. Look at your personality type on an Enneagram. I’ve realised that my self esteem is often impacted by the way my success or failure is perceived by others, and knowing that has then helped me to say to myself ‘well the reason you’re feeling low is because you’re letting other people’s opinions determine your worth.’ Once I’ve done that I can realise that my worth isn’t determined by my successes or failures.

9. Loving nature so much makes me realise i’m also a part of nature. I was made to be as beautiful and purposeful as anyone else alive.

10. I realised that my standards for myself are very high. Higher than they are for others.

Forms response chart. Question title: do you forgive yourself in the same way you'd forgive others?. Number of responses: 300 responses.

Header image credit: BBC LifeBabble

Survey results images credit: Amy Ramswell